One of the telling reasons why you could be gaining weight is lack of sleep. Improper sleep leads to a host of problems like restlessness, poor concentration, no focus, headaches and reduced immunity. Because of the disruption in your body clock and hormones, it could also lead to weight gain.
The problem with many of us is that we just can’t understand why we can’t sleep. Regardless of the many remedies, still nothing works. Perhaps it is because we are doing the wrong thing. These 15 things could be the surprising factors for your lack of sleep.
1 Wrong air temperature
When it is extremely cold outside, you would always want to lay under the blankets and sleep. You can even use a heater just to have a more sound sleep with a light blanket. The optimal temperature for a person to fall asleep is 15-23 degree Celsius (60-75 F).
2 Physical exercise
You might have noticed that people who usually workout or go to the gym hit the bed pretty early. The reason is that our entire nervous system gets stimulated while working out, so we cannot sleep just after gyming. Go to bed at least 3 hours after working out. This way you can sleep soundly.
3 Lack of schedule or bedtime routine
It is extremely helpful to your body if you maintain a tight schedule by getting sufficient sleep and eating at the right time. It makes no sense to sacrifice sleep on weekdays and then try to cover it up on weekends. Go to bed at the same time every night. The best time to sleep is between 10 p.m. to 1 a.m. every day.
4 Wrong Lighting
A single light bulb can hamper your sleep completely. LED lights and lamps tend to decrease our sleepiness. It is better to have a dimmer bulb as it will help us fall asleep faster. You can keep light out by wearing a sleeping mask or putting off all light sources.
Noise or irritable sounds like the noise of the cars or neighbors chatting away loudly can cause distress which may not let you sleep at all but make you feel more frustrated. In such situations, you can use earplugs or if possible try to turn on white noise to remove all background noise for a pleasant sleep.
6 Using your bed for the wrong purpose
One bad habit which can surely decrease our sleep enormously is by making even your bedroom into your office. You should avoid using laptops and mobiles before sleeping. It would be advisable to keep your job outside the bedroom.
Caffeine is famous for keeping a person awake for the day and the night. Caffeine is found in many beverages other than coffee like chocolate, tea, and many products. In the evening, you should avoid substances containing caffeine for better sleep at night.
8 Making yourself fall asleep
Many go to bed without wanting to sleep, hoping the desire will come by itself. In the majority of cases, though, it won’t. Solution: If you can’t fall asleep in 20 minutes, get up from the bed and read a book (not an e-book, though, as it’ll make things even worse), or do something relaxing.
You may feel that alcohol helps you sleep faster and that is true in the general time. But, what you don’t know is that alcohol also affects REM or rapid eye movement which is an important part of the sleep cycle. When you wake up you start feeling nauseous, cranky and tired. This is also part of the hangover. What you should do is to consume alcohol if you really need to at least 2 or 3 hours before sleeping or quit altogether.
10 Your mind is overloaded
Sometimes even though you may have had a hard day at work, you find you just can’t sleep simply because your mind is too overloaded. It needs to discard some of the stuff crammed in it. You desperately need your thoughts to be directed elsewhere. If you don’t allow your brain to reboot and rest itself from the problems of the day, this may result in a poor quality of sleep.
What you should do is to try and distract yourself from worries and thoughts of the day. Turn your thoughts to something else or start trying to remember names of countries beginning with the same letter or some other mindless exercise like counting sheep.
11 No pre-night sleep routine or habit
Everyone should have a pre-bed ritual or habit to get them into the mood for sleep. A lack of a bedtime ritual can actually cause a poor quality of sleep and you won’t feel like you have rested the next morning. A ritual could be anything from a spiritual exercise, a bit of yoga, or even a warm shower. You need to train your body to start reacting to a certain habit much like an algorithm that when your body reads the signs, it knows it has to sleep.
warm shower which shouldn’t be too hot or too cool is great and so is listening to soothing music. Don’t go in for a hot bath as it will increase metabolism and that will again result in sleeplessness.
12 Wrong sleep position
An uncomfortable position while sleeping causes several problems for sleep. In fact, the wrong position can also impact your health in the wrong way. It stresses your body out leaving you unrested the entire night. You should adopt a favorable position for sleeping where your body is comfortable and there is no room for aches and pains later. When you adopt a comfortable position, learn to relax in it and do not change it. You will fall asleep faster.
Stress is another common factor causing insomnia. You may not be a depressive patient but the stress causes you to be an insomniac on certain nights. The art here is to learn ways and means to distress you before bed. Watch a movie, listen to music or even practice some light yoga exercises to destress yourself.
There are some people who literally program their minds into anxiety before sleep all because they have to wake up at a certain time. As a result, even though you have set an alarm, you keep waking up to watch the clock. You also keep clockwatching to see how many hours you have left to sleep. Do you think that’s right?
Wrong. Time, of course, rules our lives and trains those 24-hour patterns in our bodies. Little do you know, but heart attacks are more common on a Monday morning than any other day. This is why; your mind too has trained itself to wake every day at 3 am all because you keep looking at the clock.
15 Worrying about sleep
In our fast-paced lifestyles, sleep has turned into a job. You have to wake up early for that important meeting every day so you think you should sleep and make the most of it as you need to wake up kids, make them breakfast but you can’t sleep.
It’s because you are worried about sleep and that’s the best way not to sleep at all. It is called psychophysiological insomnia and is the biggest nightmare for working people. But there are ways and means to get around it by optimizing your sleep schedule.